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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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My question is Am I wrong to want my husband to stop traveling

Resolved Question:

My question is:
Am I wrong to want my husband to stop traveling in his job to come home and save his family. My husband thinks our marriage should just be ok while he travels 5 to 6 days a week and I'm left home with 4 teenagers, one of which is my step-daughter (that is another issue)? My husband thinks we will lose everything if he comes home, but arent we losing everything if we arent together as a family? I am on the verge of a nervous break down and divorce. Any advice would be helpful.
Sincerly Lose in TN.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.


It certainly is very difficult when you are acting as a single parent to so many kids. It leaves you to act as both mother and father. It can be extremely stressful and hard on your relationship when you do not see your husband that often as well.


Is there a way to have your husband look for another job? Or does he not want to? It sounds like from your description of the situation that he is not concerned with the amount of time he is away and this is the main problem between the two of you.


If he is unwilling to see this as an issue, it leaves you with two choices. You can either leave him and the marriage or you can stay and modify the situation so you can at least reduce your stress level and manage the work load.


If you choose to leave, be sure you see a counselor to work out your feelings and sort out your arrangements with someone who can offer objective insight and help you make the best choice possible for yourself.


If you want to stay, try talking with your husband again. Let him know that the stress is overwhelming for you and you'd like to help him find a better solution, such as a new job. You can offer to help out by finding a job for yourself so your husband could take a lower paying job and your salary could offset the difference.


If he refuses to work with you on fixing this situation, then you will need to find ways to cope with the work load of being a single parent. It may be a very good idea for you to find work yourself, just so you have an outlet and a way to have your own income. You can also see if there is anyone who can stay with your kids while you get away for a while. Go visit friends or family for a few days. Or just go on your own somewhere. The goal is to have time to reduce stress and feel more energized.


Have the kids pick up more of the work load at home as well. Assign chores that your husband would normally do if he were home. Have the kids help with laundry, make dinner, etc. These are excellent skills for them to learn anyway since they will soon leave your home and be on their own.


And consider seeing a counselor by yourself if your husband will not go. The therapist can do a full evaluation to determine if you have a diagnosis (probably one that is stress related) and what your treatment needs are. You may also want to have your medication reevaluated. Lithium is an extremely strong medication usually reserved for those who are diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. Talk with your doctor and your therapist about why you were prescribed this medication and if it is the correct medication for you. You can find a therapist by asking your doctor for a referral. You can also search on line at Talking with your pastor is also an excellent idea and it is good you have already taken this step.


Here are some books that will help:


The Complete Single Mother: Reassuring Answers to Your Most Challenging Concerns by Andrea Engber and Leah Klungness (although you are not totally a single parent, you are very close to being one.)


The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook (New Harbinger Self-Help Workbook) by XXXXX XXXXX, XXXXX Robbins Eshelman, Matthew McKay and Patrick Fanning


We Need to Talk Tough Conversations With Your Spouse: From Money to Infidelity Tackle Any Topic with Sensitivity and Smarts by XXXXX XXXXX


You can find these books on or your local library may have them for you.


I hope this has helped you,

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I have already talked to my husband about working here in town but the answer is always, I have worked too hard to get where I am and that isnt going to change and we would lose everything. My response is we are going to lose everything if we dont come together, so whats the difference. I have suggested moving to where he is and the response to that is I want MY daughter to finish school there. There is always an excuse for not fixing or trying to fix our situation. I dont want to divorce but I also dont want to be force into staying in a relationship that just tears you down.
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

It is a difficult choice to make since he will not help you in this situation. He sounds like he does not want to fix what is wrong, which does not help your marriage at all.


I highly recommend you see a therapist to decide what to do. This is your marriage and right now, you are being given two bad choices by your husband's lack of cooperation about this issue. I can understand your dilemma and how difficult it is. You should not take your decision lightly. Seeing a therapist will help you work out what you feel would be best for you and your family.


Also consider getting support from family and friends. You should not have to make this decision alone and you need all the help you can get.


Whatever you decide, be sure to take it slow, and care for yourself the best you can.



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